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Document Details


Title: Donald (Don) Anderson
Document type: Oral history
Accessibility: Free Only
Repository: Cable Center. Barco Library. Special Collections
Collection: Cable Center Oral History Collection
Description: Don Anderson was among the first employees at Home Box Office and helped develop into a powerful new engine of growth for the cable industry. He followed with a variety of roles at Time Inc. and later Time Warner, spearheading the company's involvement with Black Entertainment Television and several international ventures. In his oral history Anderson recounts his childhood in Los Angeles and Orange County, California, where his father was a civil rights activist. A dyslexic, Anderson never finished college, but worked as a draftsman for Northrup and later opened his own audio and video studio. After becoming involved in a group called Blacks for Soul in Television, he was recruited by the National Cable Television Association in 1972. He worked on a variety of issues for NCTA and headed up its political action committee. IN 1974 he was recruited to work for fledgling HBO. There he worked to sign up cable systems as affiliates. After the service launched on satellites, Anderson played a key role in establishing HBO's regional affiliate headquarters. He became a vice president of HBO, the first African American vice president in the history of HBO-parent Time Inc. Anderson recalls the struggles to get cable established in the major urban areas and the challenges of developing programming to appeal to the urban audience. Later in his career at Time Warner he headed up an effort to expand internationally, persuading the company to invest in the first commercially licensed broadcasting company in South Africa. In the mid-1990s he left Time Warner. After brief retirement, he went to work for another fledgling operation, DIVA.
URL: http://www.cablecenter.org/education/library/oralHistoryDetails.cfm?id=50
Original Language: English
Video: [Video available]
Audio: [Audio available]
Time span: Not indicated ... to 2000 (Year of interview)
Speaker: Anderson, Don
Speaker gender: Male
Document location: Denver, CO
Document date: May-2000
Interviewer: Yutkin, Jerry
Locations discussed: North America; United States
Topics discussed - ASP terms: Broadcasting; Cable television--United States; North America; Oral history; Public broadcasting; Television; Television programs; United States
Topics discussed - Other terms: Cable administrators
ASP release: 2005-06
Document code: OHI0022675-24061